Washington, DC (STL.News) The State Department today released its annual Country Reports on Terrorism, detailing key developments in 2019 in the global fight against ISIS, al-Qa’ida, Iranian proxies, and other international terrorist groups.
The report notes that the United States and its partners made major strides to defeat and degrade international terrorist organizations in 2019. Along with the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS, the United States completed the destruction of the so-called caliphate in Iraq and Syria in March. In October, ISIS leader Abu Bakr al Baghdadi died following a U.S. military raid on his compound in Syria.
In April, the Secretary of State designated Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, including its Qods Force, as a Foreign Terrorist Organization – the first time part of a foreign government has been so designated. In September, President Trump ordered the most significant update of U.S. terrorism designation authorities since the aftermath of 9/11. And throughout the year, a number of governments in the Western Hemisphere and Europe announced the terrorist designations of Hizballah.
The report also discusses U.S. efforts to address new and ongoing challenges, including the repatriation of foreign terrorist fighters, particularly to Western Europe; the expansion of ISIS branches and networks in Africa; and the threat of racially or ethnically motivated terrorism.